Michael Moreken

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since Jan 06, 2018
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books food preservation urban
I now (201 live in east TN. Plant green crops in first three or four beds for gardening in spring 2019. Dealing with being surrounded with black walnut on 3 sides! Cutting down a lot of trees too. Zone 6B, Ph 7. High P low K.
On the plateau in TN
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Recent posts by Michael Moreken

Michael Longfield wrote:
We also have available:
TREES: Chestnut, thornless honey locust, black locust, Chinese dogwood
ROOTS: Chinese artichoke, Jerusalem artichoke, comfrey, groundnut
SEEDS: Chinese wild yam, Codonopsis

Feel free to ask any questions...



Did you let your American groundnuts grow only on the ground?  Or did you give them something to climb?

I have groundnuts on the way to me.  Should arrive in about a week.  Think I plant them near my water pool, maybe else where.
The wind blew off my newspaper cover that was under nylon netting last night in the frost.   The Jade bush beans got hit pretty hard, I was ready to cut them off today, but we have another freeze coming on Tuesday and I let that take them out.  My field peas were not happy with the frost last either, sagging this morning, and this afternoon.  Funny the 6 inch favas suffered too, the smaller ones ok.  Cereal rye happy.  Plus hairy vetch and perennial rye ok too.
4 days ago
Looks like the garlic survived the latest frost, we another storm coming with freeze and snow? Tuesday.
Saw at least 2 garlic shoots about an inch high, that classically will get nailed by the 21°F we are due tonight.
I think cardboard with tape removed and black and white newspaper is fine.  Color in newspaper is bad news.  The black and white has soy.  Possibly the color cardboard is not great for the same reason.  They use chemicals to produce the color.
5 days ago
I think all my duckweed in now in the lawn.  Tonight they are saying it will be 21°F here tonight.  Hardest freeze yet this Fall.
5 days ago
Tonight getting below freezing here, checked two days ago and saw a few floating where I wanted them.  The rest ended up in water on the lawn!
6 days ago
I have heard that you can use sugar and water.  In times of need.
6 days ago
99% of the plants are out of the pool into yard by second day.  We got 2 cm rain and ~30 mph winds that knocked the duckweed plants for a loop.  Hope it survives.
1 week ago
I would stay away from willow plants as they suck up water everywhere.  I also would recommend look like others have mentioned try to think about introducing Nitrogen fixing trees/bushes or plants every 3 or 4th tree. 

A big idea is once you can bring in animals who will help add nutrients, etc.  Possibly start with a couple of chickens.  At some point you need to bring in animals.

Gabe Brown's notes:

1. Use the least amount of mechanical or chemical disturbance possible — Keep tilling to a bare minimum and strive to avoid all synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and fungicides.

2. Armor the soil surface with living plants — Forest and prairie land is completely covered with vegetation, and this is the environment farmers need to emulate. That vegetation protects the soil not only from wind and water erosion, but also from excessive heating and cooling. These living plants are what end up actually "growing" topsoil.

3. Have living roots in the soil as long as possible — This is an extension of armoring with cover crops. Soil is formed from growing plants that take in carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere through photosynthesis, and release it as "liquid carbon" through the roots, depositing it back into the soil, where it attracts microorganisms that ultimately end up providing the plant with all the nutrients it needs to grow.

4. Diversify — Having a diverse array of plant life is essential, and cover crops fulfill this requirement as well.  Cover crops, helping to improve the soil, attract beneficial insects and capture more sunlight (energy).

5. Integrate livestock and other animals, including insects — Flowering plants that attract pollinators and predator insects will naturally help ward off pests that might otherwise decimate your main crop.
1 week ago